Most of us don’t have an unlimited budget or space to put together our most ideal home gym setup. So these best basement home gym ideas presented here are directed towards both price tag and gym space.
Purchasing the best home gym machines and fitness equipment that serve a dual purpose is a great way to get the most out of your important workout area. In addition, there are many home gym workout accessories that are both inexpensive and compact, yet can serve more than one purpose for a small home gym, basement, or garage gym.
In additon, we will also be including some of our favorite brands and products that we have reviewed and used in the past.
How To Buy A Home Gym
Here are a few tips on how to buy home gym equipment which we have learned from our experience and as well as others.
Although most gym equipment and accessories come with a satisfaction guarantee, home fitness equipment can be a pain to return and can cost shipping. Not to mention a drain on your time, so it is important to most of us to choose wisely.
Here are some key things to look for:
#1. Made in China
Although we don’t have any issues with China or their products, the quality can lead to big inconveniences and can be costly. The biggest thing is finding replacement parts-you will need them. Also, they tend to have less weight capacity which can make them less stable. This is not good for many reasons.
#2. Space Considerations
When planning out fitness equipment for the home, be sure to look for options such as a foldable (folding squat rack), comes with wheels, smart storage (weight plate trees and dumbbell racks), and all-in-one exercise machines. We will talk more about these types of options later.
#3 Cost Considerations and Return Policies
Two of our favorite places to shop for fitness exercise equipment online are Rogue Fitness and Dick’s Sporting Goods. The return policy is an extremely important factor to keep in mind because fitness equipment gets more abuse than most. Keep an eye out for items like the Rogue Fitness Ohio Bar which comes with a lifetime warranty.
#4 Exercise Equipment Reviews
Whether you are searching for cheap exercise equipment or even for well made be sure to read more than one review on it. One person’s product experience could be much different than anothers.
The Best Basement Home Gym Ideas Overview
In order to choose the best basement, garage or just the best small home gym equipment, we have set the budget to under $1000 for most of these products with the exception of interactive home gyms which cost more in the $2000 range. If you are spending over this for a bench, barbell, or dumbbell set, you may be paying more than you need to.
The Most Functional Piece of Home Gym Equipment
One excellent idea for a great piece of multi-use home fitness and exercise equipment would be a power squat rack or power cage. This may sound like a big and expensive piece of fitness equipment for a gym rat basement. However, a power rack is simply a more functional version of a squat stand.
All-In-One Power Rack
Rogue RML-390C Power Rack 3.0
Starting under $1000, Rogue power racks and squat racks will accept many different squat rack accessories that you can add on. This is an ideal option as your workout program and fitness level progress. And even as your budget allows.
It can be used as a full workout station and many of these only take up around a 4′ square. If you add a bar, weight plates, and bench to this, there is no exercise program that you can’t do!
Exercises that you can perform with a power rack include squats, deadlifts, bench presses, and pull-ups. This includes variations of these exercises that will enable you to work out any muscle group. Rogue gym equipment is incredibly durable, well made, and reasonably priced.
Barbell and Weight Plate Set
Rogue Alpha Bar and Bumper Set
Whether you are planning on getting a rack or not, you may still need to perform deadlifts and military presses. It’s always best to purchase a barbell set to reduce the cost of purchasing individual plates. You will save money on shipping as well.
Rogue Fitness Barbell sets come with their lifetime warranty, including their famous Olympic Ohio Bar. This bar and bumper plate set is 320lbs. Rogue bumper plates are made for durability with their high-performance coating. They are made to give a “dead bounce” when dropped. The stainless steel spring collars are also included with the Rogue Alpha set.
For convenient weight plate storage, check out Rogue’s bumper plate Storage Tree, Cart, and Rack options.
Adjustable Workout Bench
Fitness Gear Pro Olympic Weight Bench
If you are going to purchase a basement home gym bench, you may as well get one that comes with many functions. Like some of the other equipment in this review, you can get an entire workout with just this one piece of home gym equipment. There are many different exercise possibilities with this workout machine.
We like the Fitness Gear Weight Bench for both the price and the versatility. It is an adjustable and foldable weight bench that comes with all the bells and whistles. Spotter arms, J-hooks, and adjustable barbell columns are all included.
The bench is adjustable to do decline benches, incline, standard chest presses and can even be used as a military press rack. It can hold up to 600lbs and is made of heavy duty steel. This all-in-one workout bench even comes with a one-year warranty.
Dumbell Set with a Dumbbell Rack
Rogue Fitness Dumbbells
If you are looking for some more “all in one” and inexpensive workout equipment a dumbbell set will get you off to a good start. They not only take up little space, but you can perform almost any exercise with these as well as getting a full body workout.
Some examples of dumbbell exercises include deadlifts, bench and military presses, squats, lat pulls, shoulder extensions, and any type of arm exercises.
Rogue Fitness Dumbbells come in sizes 2.5lbs to 125lbs, they are no marking, quiet, safe, and easy to clean. With a one-year warranty, durable material and chrome handle., this will make a great dumbbell set for the money. Purchase them as a set or separately.
To save the optimal amount of space in your basement home gym, you will need one of these dumbbell racks.
All-In-One Home Gym Machines
Another idea is to choose on weight and pulley type system that you can perform hundreds of exercises with. A couple of examples of the best home gym machines we have reviewed are (in order of price point) the Total Gym XLT, the Bowflex Xtreme, and the Bowflex Revolution.
An all in one workout machine has many advantages when it comes to furnishing a home gym
- Takes up very little room/small footprint
- No need to purchase weights, bars or other workout accessories
- May be a quieter alternative for the home
- Cost effectiuve – only have to purchase one peice of basement gym equipment
- Workout all muscle groups and body parts with one machine
With these exercise machines, you will still have room for other home gym accessories such as resistance band sets for stretching and recovery or maybe a pull-up bar/dip station.
Here are some examples of our favorite home gym strength machines.
Bowflex Xtreme 2 SE Home Gym
The Bowflex Xtreme Home Gym gives you 210lbs of smooth Power Rod resistance along with durability. This home gym machine can also be upgradable to 410lbs which is more resistant than most of us will ever need.
Combined with the cable system the Bowflex Xtreme machine provides over 70 exercises including many variations. There are also Bowflex Xtreme 2 SE accessories that can be added for even more exercises. An added bonus is that the Bowflex power rods come with a lifetime warranty.
Total Gym XLS
This machine is made more for muscle toning and functional fitness rather than muscle building. This versatile home gym machine has passed the test of time because it works. It’s also fairly inexpensive, takes up little space, and can be easily folded to be put away.
There are 6 resistance levels that offer over 80 exercises for a full workout program. Total Gym XLS is the middle-of-the-road model meaning it’s affordable but still comes with lots of options. This model already comes with several Total Gym accessories, but there are many more available to add even more exercises. The Total Gym XLS comes with a lifetime warranty.
Bowflex Revolution Home Gym
The Bowflex Revolution Home Gym is their upgraded packaging, made with a new style of movement mechanisms and design. Is the most state of the art, using an independent, high-tech internal plate system that gives many variations and incredibly smooth movements.
The Revolution is designed specifically for muscle building exercises. It offers 220lbs of SpiraFlex resistance which is upgradable to 300lbs and provides over 100 exercises with up to 400 variations.
Cardio Machine Full Body Workout
For a cardio machine, we recommend adding some weightlifting equipment as well to your basement home gym. Especially if your workout goals include adding lean muscle.
Bowflex Max Trainer M6
This is top of the line and very high tech workout machine, but worth it if you are looking for a full body workout program. This will keep your entire body working together ergonomically to give you a safe and exhausting workout.
- Can be used by heavier customers up to 300 lbs.
- The Bowflex M6 is very light and compact.
- The machine can be used without a Bowflex subscription.
- There is a 2 month trial for the MAX Intelligence App personal trainer.
- Low Impact on Joints and tendons, and High performance for muscles.
- The Bowflex 2 year warranty. (You can pay to extend it to 3 or 5 years)
- The full potential of the MAX Intelligence software costs $15 per month
- This Machine may be too expensive for some home gyms
Interactive Home Gyms
This category has now grown to any type of interactive home gym system you can think of. There are several different “mirror” gym systems depending on your workout goals. But also interactive runners, ellipticals, rowers, resistance machines, and interactive exercise bikes. These are the best home workout machines if you never want to get bored.
Below is our favorite for many different reasons.
Tempo Studio Interactive Gym
Since this review keeps referring to space and money saving one stop shop workout equipment, this is the top dog. The Tempo Studio really has it all. A top of the line technology driven, IO interface with live classes, as well as the weightlifting and workout accessories you need.
Here are some of the many benefits of Tempo over other home gym mirrors:
- Priced in line with other interactive “mirror” home gyms
- Both live and on-demand classes to choose from
- One of the only truely interactive gyms
- 3-D mapping to get instant trainer feedback
- Choose between dozens of workout catagories
Keep in mind that with any type of interactive home gym whether is a wall-mounted mirror gym, treadmill, or rower, there will be subscription fees associated with it to be able to enjoy the classes.
Other Interactive Home Gyms
The Mirror Home Gym
This is our runner up because it is also quite functional, however, it comes at less of a price and without a few perks. You will get tons of on-demand classes as well as live classes with a fitness trainer. There are exercises and workout programs that you can choose from any fitness category.
The Mirror Gym will give you a full body workout, but you will need to supply and necessary workout equipment. Once again, all interactive home gyms require a monthly subscription for these machines to work.
Basement Home Gym Ideas Conclusion
We feel that you can choose fairly compact and inexpensive home gym fitness equipment and still get a full and effective workout.
If your not sure of your fitness goals to begin, simply start out small. Try a few sets of dumbbell (a couple pairs), a pull up bar, and some resistance bands at first. You can always add on as your workouts progress. Or just go all out with one of the cool, interactive home gyms and you will never run out of workouts.
If you have any questions or comments on the best basement home gym ideas, please leave us a message below.
For more ideal workout accessories, check out our small home gym design ideas for more fitness equipment options.